Food recalls hit two-year high to end 2012

FDA enforcement reports reveal food recalls hit a two-year high during the fourth quarter of 2012, according to the ExpertRECALL Index. FDA’s 552 food recalls in the fourth quarter of 2012 represent a rate of roughly six recalls per day, more than double the rate of the previous quarter. Of those recalls, 94 percent fell under the Class 1 designation of risk of serious health consequences or death. Salmonella was the number one cause of food recalls, with undeclared allergens or nuts second.

“The fourth quarter increase in food recalls is due in large part to the many products affected by a single ingredient supplier, in this case a peanut butter supplier,” says Joseph A. Levitt, former director of FDA’s Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition. “This also reflects increased vigilance by both food companies and FDA to identify problems before people get sick and recall affected products promptly.”